SpokenWord open mic every Monday. AWOL writers’ workshop every Sunday.

This info last updated Feb 8th 2019. 

SpokenWord Paris is one pole of a nomadic tribe of people who love poetry, writing and song. A home for creatives and lost anglophones. We do an open mic night called SpokenWord every Monday at the Chat Noir and an allied writers’ workshop at Berkeley Books of Paris (every Sunday.) We do a literary journal called The Bastille and Tightrope Books published many of us in the book “Strangers in Paris.” Click on the blue stamp on the right to sign up to the mailing list.

Open mic/scène ouverte: Performance poetry. Lire vivant. Poésie sonore. Stand up. Monologue. Stories. Beat poetry. Spoken word. English. Français. Your own original texts. Old texts from Rimbaud to Dr Seuss, Beowulf to Gil Scott-Heron. Chacun a son mot à dire. Make the words come alive…………………….. Acoustic songs also welcome.

SpokenWord Sounds
A taste of Monday nights at the Chat Noir, by Victor. Listen or download here.

Every Monday except August. Come to the Chat Noir, 76 rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud 75011. Métro Parmentier/Couronnes. Sign up 8pm to 9.30pm in the bar. Poetics start from 8.30pm underground. Check out the Practical info page for more info. Paris’ biggest and longest-running English open mic night, started in 2006. All languages welcome. Free entry. Exit one euro.

Check next week’s theme here

AWOL Writers’ Group
Sunday evenings, usually 6.30pm – 8.30pm at Berkeley Books. Time vary so check here. Free. Bring your writing or just come and listen join the discussion. Hosted by Bruce Sherfield, Simon Millward and Thibaut Narme. Description. Join us afterwards for a drink.

Chat Noir sketch drawn by Allison Iwata.

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Antonia Alexandra Klimenko to Guest at SpokenWord Paris February 18th–Monday’s Theme: Heart

21368721_10211878856661802_6704144168900413335_o (1)Antonia was first introduced on the BBC and to the literary world by the legendary James Meary Tambimuttu of Poetry London—publisher of T.S. Eliot, Dylan Thomas, Henry Miller and Bob Dylan, to name a few.  The former San Francisco Poetry Slam Champion is widely published. Her work has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies  (among them) XXI Century World Literature (in which she represents France) and Maintenant :  Journal of Contemporary Dada Writing and Art archived at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. and New York’s Museum of Modern Art. She is the recent recipient of two grants:  one from Poets in Need, of which Michael (100 Thousand Poets for Change) Rothenberg is a co-founder; the second—the 2018 Generosity Award bestowed on her by Kathleen Spivack and Josheph Murray for her outstanding service to international writers through SpokenWord Paris where she is Writer/ Poet in Residence.

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Pansy Maurer-Alvarez to Guest at SpokenWord Paris February 11th–Monday’s Theme: Legends

001145150002_editPansy Maurer-Alvarez was born in Puerto Rico, grew up in Pennsylvania and did her literary studies at universities in the US, Switzerland and Spain. She emigrated from the US to Switzerland in 1973 and moved to Paris in 1990. Active in the Parisian poetry scene, she was a long time student of Alice Notley, and, for a few years, curated the Poets Live reading series. Her latest collections of poetry are ORANGES IN JANUARY (Knives Forks and Spoons Press, 2016) and IN A FORM OF SUSPENSION (corrupt press, 2014) and she has 4 previous collections.  She is a contributing editor to the British magazine, Tears in the Fence and the American magazine, Osiris. She lives in Strasbourg, writes and goes to lots of concerts and the theater. She dreams of buying a harp.

Photo Credit:  Sabine Dundure Photography


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Regie Cabico to Guest at SpokenWord Paris February 4th–Monday’s Theme: Walls

regie cabico 1Regie Cabico is a spoken word pioneer having won The Nuyorican Poets Cafe Grand Slam and later taking top prizes in three National Poetry Slams. Television credits include 2 seasons of HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, NPR’s Snap Judgement & MTV’s Free Your Mind. The Kenyon Review named Regie Cabico the “Lady Gaga of Poetry” and he has been listed in BUST magazine’s 100 Men We Love. Cabico is the recipient of a 2006 Barnes & Noble Writers for Writers Award for his work teaching poetry at Bellevue Hospital for young adults. He most recently edited Super Stoked: An Anthology of Trans and Queer Poetry (Capturing Fire Press, 2018) .

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Dareka Daremo to Guest at SpokenWord Paris January 28th–Monday’s Theme: Whirlwind

portrait dareka“Dareka performs his poetry since 2005 in France, then in USA, and everywhere his feet can land on. He is now traveling through France and Europe, and the world when he has the time and the chance to do so, to satisfy his thirst for poetry. He has hosted the most popular Paris poetry weekly French venue, “Slam au Downtown”, for two years when he wasn’t rocking the stage with his experimental fusion punk jazz spoken word band, La Bête Aveugle. He is now signed into the young and dynamic music label En Garde! Records both with his band and as a solo artist.

In December 2018, he released his book « Tourbillons » (Whirlwinds), Xérographes Editions, in collaboration with Gaspard, a young graduate from the Beaux Arts de Paris. Both a collection of poems and a punk fantasy illustrations book, it represents an elegant synthesis of Dareka’s poems, once performed, sung, screamed, whispered or simply written without having ever been read out loud. Just as his life, his poems are metamorphic animals, and he’s a zoo keeper in hell. They are trees and buildings, little skeletons dancing under the moonlight, lonely kids lost in urban mazes, sewing needles stuck in his frail stupid little heart. They are maelstrom of rhymes, soda drinks in a night bar, for a drunken public. They are you, they are him, they are life and death kissing in a blink, but it does not really matter.” 

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Matt Jones to Guest at SpokenWord Paris January 21st–Monday’s Theme: Monsters

matt jonesMatt Jones has studied monster lore in Afghanistan, China, Nicaragua, France, Canada and on a warship: Some monsters we discover abroad; others we carry with us. He was the winner of Arc Poetry Magazine’s Poem of the Year Reader’s Choice Award for his poem, “Wounded Village.” His story, “Drone,” was published in F(r)iction magazine #9. Today, Matt lives in Paris and works as the prose editor of Paris Lit Up Magazine. He writes books about giant octopuses, Bigfoot, and other fabulous beasts. 

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Looking back at 2018… c/o Sabine Dundure’s photography

Just some of the poets, singers, comedians and regulars at SpokenWord Paris last year. c/o Sabine Dundure – more of her work here.
Cheers all,
David Barnes

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Richard Earls at SpokenWord 14th Jan

Richard Earls performs on the London, Paris and New York spoken word circuits and will be in Paris in January to promote Bonfire, a slim volume of poetry, containing work he has developed on stage over the past two years.

At Spoken Word Paris he will be airing brand new compositions, notably the epic Mairead Aigneis, dedicated to all 21st Century Warrior Queens.

Photo: reading at his last gig at the Bowery Poetry Club, Manhattan in October.

SpokenWord theme: LIES and TRUTHS

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Heidi Seaborn to guest at SpokenWord 7th January

Heidi Seaborn is Poetry Editor for The Adroit Journal, a New York University MFA candidate and author of an award-winning debut book of poetry Give a Girl Chaos {see what she can do} forthcoming from Mastodon Books in early 2019. Since Heidi started writing in 2016, she’s won or been shortlisted for over a dozen awards and published in numerous journals and anthologies, in a chapbook Finding My Way Home and in a political pamphlet Body Politic (Mount Analogue). She graduated from Stanford University and is on the board of Tupelo Press. http://www.heidiseabornpoet.com

SpokenWord theme: CHAOS

Cheers all,
David Barnes

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Christmas Eve SpokenWord…

A festive SpokenWord for those like me with no family to annoy in Paris… theme MIDWINTER, usuall SpokenWordery with sign up from 8pm, poetics begin from 8.30pm downstairs at the Chat Noir… Cheers all, David Barnes

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James Jewell to guest at SpokenWord 17th December

James Jewell is a jack of all trades: poet, rambling man, singer songwriter, and sometimes slave to the big system to make a buck. He and his wife Kara have been kind of nomadic wonderers from their home in the hills of Pennsylvania to Nashville, Los Angeles, Toronto and now Paris France. James has a strong sense of his Pennsylvania roots while being influenced by the weird and wonderful adventures he and his wife have experienced. James has now been part of the Paris scene for almost eight years and strongly influenced and inspired by living there.

James Jewell’s solo album “SONGS FROM THE FRIDGE” is a mix of songs that spans more then 20 years. Some fresh out of the bins of the Paris street markets and overs from the deep freeze of times past. Influences include, Woody Guthery, Cash, Elezibeth Cotton, Violent Femmes, Françoise Hardy, Georges Brassens and The Who.

SpokenWord theme: SHIPS

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